The Role of Experts and Scholars in Community Conflict Resolution: A Comparative Analysis of Two Cases in China
In this article, I draw from two case studies to explore the role of experts and scholars (ES), as a special third party, in community conflict resolution in contemporary China. Findings include that local ES are more likely to play the roles as leaders, organizers of farmers, and as agents of government. Nonlocal ES are more likely to play the roles as information providers and as pure self‐interest pursuers. This study also reveals that, although their knowledge and information are important, knowledge and information are only preconditions for ES's participation. Their social capital–rather than the knowledge and information they possess–differentiates the effectiveness of their participation in governance and the facilitation of community conflict resolution. Local ES with high social capital are more effective in governance and facilitating community conflict resolution than nonlocal ES without high social capital.
Keywords: case study, cross‐culture, community conflict resolution, experts, scholars, trust chain